Apple reportedly evaluating IGZO display tech for next-gen iPhones and iPads

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Apple is reportedly in talks with Sharp to use the company's IGZO display technology in next-generation iPhones and iPads, but low yield rates have prompted the Cupertino tech giant to look at other Asian display makers in efforts to bolster its supply chain.

Sharp
Expectations for Sharp's IGZO panels in 2011.


According to people familiar with the matter, Apple is said to be further evaluating Sharp's IGZO panel production capacity for 2013 ahead of rolling out the technology in upcoming iPhone, iPad and iPad mini models, reports DigiTimes. Rumors of Apple's interest in using IGZO, or indium, gallium and zinc oxide, displays first surfaced in late 2011.

While the Sharp-developed screens are thinner and more efficient than those found in current iDevices, Apple was unable to take advantage of the technology as the struggling Japanese electronics firm saw setbacks with initial yields. Only recently has the company introduced the first IGZO panels with its own mobile offerings limited to the Japanese domestic market.

It appears that supply constraints are a continuing concern, as Apple is said to also be evaluating whether display partner AU Optronics' "L5C" line can be used to produce the cutting edge panels. In addition, Innolux was reportedly granted a license to make IGZO displays, suggesting that the Taiwanese company may become an Apple display supplier.

The most recent rumors surrounding an IGZO-toting Apple product came in July when sources in China claimed the tech would be one of the standout features of the iPad mini.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 20


    Hasn't that been the case for about a year now?

  • Reply 2 of 20


    I'm sure this is the second time around for this story.

     

  • Reply 3 of 20
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member


    Apple had better get a move on with their IGZO 'investigation' seeing as the next iPad will be released in months only...


     


    image

  • Reply 4 of 20
    tylerk36tylerk36 Posts: 1,037member
    Im sure samsung will have something to say about this even though it has nothing to do with them.
  • Reply 5 of 20


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  • Reply 6 of 20
    blackbookblackbook Posts: 1,361member
    gtr wrote: »
    Apple had better get a move on with their IGZO 'investigation' seeing as the next iPad will be released in months only...

    ;)

    Haha and the iPad is probably the only product due for a redesign in 2013 since the iPhone will probably just get a Speed bump.
  • Reply 7 of 20
    tylerk36 wrote: »
    Im sure samsung will have something to say about this even though it has nothing to do with them.

    Requesting the blueprints so they can copy it, you mean?
  • Reply 8 of 20
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,028member
    philboogie wrote: »
    Requesting the blueprints so they can copy it, you mean?

    Samsung is already working on IZGO displays enhanced with another technology by, Qualcomm, or such. The way this looks to be falli g out, Samsung may have displays in quantifiable numbers before Sharp.
  • Reply 9 of 20
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,164member


    The first smartphone utilizing Sharp's IGZO display? The already-shipping Android-based Asus Padfone 2. Coming soon is Sharps own Aquos Phone Zeta, also running Android. Someone's gotta be the guinea-pig. 

  • Reply 10 of 20
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by melgross View Post





    Samsung is already working on IZGO displays enhanced with another technology by, Qualcomm, or such. The way this looks to be falli g out, Samsung may have displays in quantifiable numbers before Sharp.


     


    Yes, but IGZO just refers to the material used, not the process.  IGZO screens have already been made and sold Samsung will make them and so will Sharp.  If as many people think, IGZO is the next way forward for screen technology, then probably lots of people are going to be making them.  The question is which one will use the best/easiest manufacturing process and which will end up being the best quality.  There are several different ways to make them.  


     


    Personally, considering that Apple has been looking into this technology for years now, is funding Sharp, and that Sharp is practically the originator of the technology itself, I would bet on Apple, not Samsung, to have the best IGZO screen moving forward. 

  • Reply 11 of 20
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,028member
    gazoobee wrote: »
    Yes, but IGZO just refers to the material used, not the process.  IGZO screens have already been made and sold Samsung will make them and so will Sharp.  If as many people think, IGZO is the next way forward for screen technology, then probably lots of people are going to be making them.  The question is which one will use the best/easiest manufacturing process and which will end up being the best quality.  There are several different ways to make them.  

    Personally, considering that Apple has been looking into this technology for years now, is funding Sharp, and that Sharp is practically the originator of the technology itself, I would bet on Apple, not Samsung, to have the best IGZO screen moving forward. 

    I know what IGZO is. Samsung isn't using the new product they're working on, yet. They're using the older material, and only in small sizes, in limited quantities. It's proving very difficult to get large quantities of these screens for any manufacturer. And even more difficult in iPad sizes and quantities. The process itself is complex, and hard to do. Sharp has shown screens using it, at very high resolutions. Too high as far as I'm concerned.

    But like most everything else, once manufacturers figure it out, it will become easy.
  • Reply 12 of 20
    sr2012sr2012 Posts: 896member
    Such a pity Apple is now behind the curve, the HTC One X, DNA/Butterfly, Samsung S3, Note 2... all have extremely impressive screens that now outshine even the iPhone 5 in many ways. And the iPad mini, not quite as nice as the Nexus 7. Quite tragic, really.
  • Reply 13 of 20
    sr2012 wrote: »
    Such a pity Apple is now behind the curve, the HTC One X, DNA/Butterfly, Samsung S3, Note 2... all have extremely impressive screens that now outshine even the iPhone 5 in many ways. And the iPad mini, not quite as nice as the Nexus 7. Quite tragic, really.

    It's all in the software. Tragedy would be more like a train crash or something. But ok, in your view: it's 'tragic' that after many decades there isn't a single company that can create software that works like Apple software does. The design, the logic (or lack thereof), the amount of effort a user has to go through - it's all mind-blowing poor, bad and just wrong. I detest companies releasing crap software, I cannot for the life of me understand the people who don't think there is anything wrong with it. I'm baffled, dumbfounded.
  • Reply 14 of 20
    sr2012sr2012 Posts: 896member
    philboogie wrote: »
    It's all in the software. Tragedy would be more like a train crash or something. But ok, in your view: it's 'tragic' that after many decades there isn't a single company that can create software that works like Apple software does. The design, the logic (or lack thereof), the amount of effort a user has to go through - it's all mind-blowing poor, bad and just wrong. I detest companies releasing crap software, I cannot for the life of me understand the people who don't think there is anything wrong with it. I'm baffled, dumbfounded.

    Tragic because Steve Jobs did so much and with him gone I see in just one year things are very different.
  • Reply 15 of 20
    sr2012 wrote: »
    Tragic because Steve Jobs did so much and with him gone I see in just one year things are very different.

    Ah, ok, totally Miss Understood. So you mean it in the light of:

    1. iMac not for sale, for weeks
    2. Purple fringe
    3. iTunes11
    4. no retina iPad Mini
    5. still no MP
    6. still no Aperture v4
    7. still no iWork'10 iWork'11 iWork'12 iWork'13
    8. iPad3 obsolete after 'a few months'
    9. store.apple.com sucks
    10. no ODD in iMac
    11. iOS loosing ground to Android
    12. AAPL sucks
    13. still no deal with China Mobile
    14. $50 for a cable
    15. no 2-year warranty in Europe
    16. Maps is not on the(ir) map
    17. Tim not #1 Man Of The Year
    18. 'pinch-to-zoom' patent invalidated
    19. iCloud = out
    20. Campus#2 completion date pushed back
    21. Gates' support of Ballmer led to Microsoft ouster of Sinofsky

    Yep, got carried away. And this is a lame weekend post. But yeah, many things to 'complain' about that don't went as expected if Steve was still here. Look, things will always go different than planned, with or without your leader. Thing is, the employees that make up the company still hold Jobs' value; go the extra mile, question everything, look at it differently. And while the employees come and go, including execs, Apple as an entity is still doing alright. I expect them to be here for many decades, no centuries to come. That might be a stupid thing to say as we can't verify this, but to me it certainly looks like Apple can be different. With or without Steve.
  • Reply 16 of 20
    [*] iMac not for sale, for weeks
    Indeed, this was a debacle by recent Apple standards. Months of delay and confusion, retail stores not showing proper demo models

    [*] Purple fringe
    Fringegate? Nah this was nonsense, not a problem

    [*] iTunes11
    Delayed, no big improvements

    [*] no retina iPad Mini
    Speaks for itself

    [*] still no MP
    Speaks for itself

    [*] still no Aperture v4
    I don't care

    [*] still no [S]iWork'10[/S] [S]iWork'11[/S] [S]iWork'12[/S] iWork'13
    I don't care

    [*] iPad3 obsolete after 'a few months'
    Nah, iPad3 and iPad4 are nice

    [*] store.apple.com sucks
    I was surprised by this

    [*] no ODD in iMac
    I don't care

    [*] iOS loosing ground to Android
    This is pertinent

    [*] AAPL sucks
    I don't care

    [*] still no deal with China Mobile
    I don't care

    [*] $50 for a cable
    I don't care

    [*] no 2-year warranty in Europe
    I don't care, in Australia you get 2-year warranty by default, supposedly, not sure if anyone's really contested it. I will, I refuse to get AppleCare now unless I want 3 years and other perks.

    [*] Maps is not on the(ir) map
    You know this, Maps was terrible

    [*] Tim not #1 Man Of The Year
    I don't care

    [*] 'pinch-to-zoom' patent invalidated
    I don't care

    [*] iCloud = out
    iCloud is quite nice, really

    [*] Campus#2 completion date pushed back
    I don't care

    [*] [S]Gates' support of Ballmer led to Microsoft ouster of Sinofsky[/S]
    Nobody cares

    NICE POST FROM YOU! Good rundown, actually.
  • Reply 17 of 20
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,028member
    sr2012 wrote: »
    Such a pity Apple is now behind the curve, the HTC One X, DNA/Butterfly, Samsung S3, Note 2... all have extremely impressive screens that now outshine even the iPhone 5 in many ways. And the iPad mini, not quite as nice as the Nexus 7. Quite tragic, really.

    Impressive? By what standard? They aren't very good from the perspective of color, repeatability, sharpness, etc. what most seem to have is size. That's not impressive, it's just big.
  • Reply 18 of 20


    Originally Posted by melgross View Post

    That's not impressive, it's just big.


     


    But that's all that matters, iddnit? image

  • Reply 19 of 20
    sr2012sr2012 Posts: 896member
    melgross wrote: »
    Impressive? By what standard? They aren't very good from the perspective of color, repeatability, sharpness, etc. what most seem to have is size. That's not impressive, it's just big.

    But that's all that matters, iddnit? :rolleyes:

    The HTC One X, One XL, One X+, Samsung S3 and Samsung Note2, Droid DNA/Buttefly all have extremely superb displays. Size, color, sharpness, uniformity, black contrast. For these models I mention, any rational person will see that the iPhone 5 is excellent but even size notwithstanding, doesn't quite come close.

    The HTC One X screen is very beautiful, and it's not even considered the "best" Android smartphone (that goes to S3, Note2, DNA/Butterfly).

    There are some smartphones with big screens that as you mention besides size, may not be that great. But for the "headline" smartphones as I mentioned above, just spend 10 minutes with each, and you'll see the screen is very impressive.

    This is not fanboy talk, it's just what a reasonable person will observe.

    It would be unreasonable to not consider my points above just because of personal bias.

    I too thought this was all big-screen boolyhoo until I actually had an open and objective mind. The larger iPhone 5 screen is really, too little too late (note: talking about screen only in this case, iOS different matter).

    It really is like an iPad 3/4 screen on a smartphone with those Android models.

    Like in days of yore re Mac vs PC, if I could run iOS on the One X, DNA/Butterfly, S3 and N2 screen... My gawd. Awesomeness.
  • Reply 20 of 20
    andreyandrey Posts: 108member
    @Sr2012, Nexus 4 (4.2.1) is a best phone I ever hold in my hands (including iphone5). But S3 and One X .... Nah. I would disagree. Beautiful screen on S3 is ruined by cheap looking construction and clumsy touchwiz, while Sense is a bit annoying for stability issues. The only issue I see with iPhone - it's designed for petite people who don't use reading glasses and love everything classic (outdated iOS UI). Thus iPhone5 > S3, one x.
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